The BDS campaign was launched on July 9, 2005, by 171 pro-Palestinian organizations. B stands for Boycott – don’t buy Israeli products or do business with Israel, or even associate with Israeli academics. D stands for divestment – sell shares and bonds of Israeli companies. S is sanctions – have your government ban trade with and investment in the offending nation. Boycott is the name of a 19th century Irish land agent who dealt harshly with tenants. They stopped working for him, until he relented. And the name stuck.

The BDS campaign purposely evokes the memory of the anti-apartheid campaigns against white minority rule in South Africa.

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